Thursday, March 29, 2012

Day One of My DC Trip

Congressman Guinta and I on the steps of the Capitol

My trip to Washington DC was great and it was really awesome to meet everybody!  I did so much I am going to do a 3 part blog and blog about day one, two and then three.

On Monday, my mom and I flew out of Boston on our way to Washington DC.  After the flight, I met the pilot and when I told him why I was going to Washington DC, he said he thinks horse slaughter is inhumane and cruel and should be banned too.  After we talked, he showed me how to take off and land the plane and I got to use the controls and move the seat around!

Next, we went to our hotel to unpack and then went to the air and space museum for a little while before my first appointment.  There were lots of cool planes and spaceships.  There were also engines and models.  I played a game where you had to land a plane on an aircraft carrier and it was really tricky and I thought it was really cool!  I took some great pictures there too.
In front of Congressman Frank Guinta's office

Signing in at Congressman Frank Guinta's office
We went back to the hotel to get ready for my first appointment with Congressman Frank Guinta (NH) and then went to his office.  
Congressman Guinta and I during our meeting

Congressman Guinta looking at the letters
We sat down in his office to talk and I told him how I started helping horses and why I think slaughter is wrong.  I brought copies of all the letters I had collected and gave them to him.  Congressman Guinta said that the letters were amazing and he was very impressed and he started to read some of them.  He told me that I should continue working hard and I was doing a great thing trying to help the horses and he was glad I came to meet him.  He even gave me his cell phone number and asked me to keep in touch.  I gave him Children 4 Horses t-shirts and bracelets for his children along with a picture of a horse I had drawn.  He said I am a really good artist and he was surprised I had drawn the pictures myself. 

After we talked, Congressman Guinta took me through the tunnels under the Congressional buildings to the Capitol building so we could go onto the floor of the House during a vote.  In the tunnel, there a two pictures from each state hung up that are chosen by the Congressmen from an art contest.  Congressman said that he's going to talk to someone about lowering the age limit so I can enter the contest.  We got to go up to the floor of the House on a special elevator that are only for Members and my mom went up to the Gallery with one of Congressman Guinta's assistants.  During the vote, I got to vote for him and a few other Congressman too!  Congressman Guinta introduced me to a lot of Congressmen and when he introduced me, he told people why I was there and that I was fighting against horse slaughter.  I met Representatives from all over the country including Georgia, Tennessee, Texas, Ohio, Missouri, Kentucky, and Virginia and even the Majority Whip, Kevin McCarthy and I got their autographs too!  Congressman Guinta and I were even on C-SPAN that night!  A few people said that they saw me on TV!

"Congressman Gregg"
After being on the floor of the House, Congressman Guinta and I went to the cafe and he told the other Congressmen how I'm a black belt in Tae Kwon Do, so they asked me to show some Tae Kwon Do moves and I did a front snap kick.  Congressman Kevin Yoder (Kansas) was there, and he asked me to show him my fighting stance too.  Congressman Guinta had already told me a funny story about his son Jack and how Jack likes Star Wars and how he had called Representative Yoder,  Mr. Yoda when they met!  I thought that was really funny, and when I met Representative Yoder, I was thinking about the story!  Congressman Guinta also told me how when he was first in office, they were unpacking everything for his office, and he and his daughter Colby were having an interesting conversation with the former vice President's son, Congressman Ben Quayle (AZ).  His son Jack was getting bored so he took one of the packing boxes and hid under it in the hallway and started shaking and moving it when people would go by, which worried some of them and they called the Capitol police who came to check it out.  They found Jack under the box and told him that he couldn't do that!  Representative Guinta has a rule of ruining every kid's dinner who he takes to the Floor by giving them ice cream, so we went to the big freezer and got a Klondike bar on our way out.  While we were in the cafe, I got a few more autographs.           

I spoke with Congressman Guinta's assistants Kayla and Emma  too and they thought what I am doing is really great and congratulated me.  It got pretty late, so after some pictures outside in front of the Capitol dome with Congressman Guinta, we went back to our hotel, had some dinner and I went to bed. I have to say that Congressman Guinta's rule worked because I didn't have much for dinner since I was already kinda full from the Klondike bar.


Saturday, March 24, 2012

Getting Ready to Go to DC to Fight for America's Horses!

I am very excited to go to Washington DC on Monday!  It feels really good to go because I know that I can help the horses.  I hope the people there listen to me  so they will know what is really going on.  I really, really, really, hope I make a difference!  

I have surpassed my goal of collecting 115 letters and now have over 200 letters to bring with me.  I am very confident that the letters will help save America's horses from slaughter.  Thank you everyone who have written a letter or supported me in any way. 

I am definitely looking forward to speaking at the press conference on Tuesday the 27th.  I have been working really hard on my speech and I think it is great and it will change people's minds about horse slaughter.  I am also very excited to meet people like Congressman Jim Moran (VA), Vicki Tobin (EWA), Jo-Claire Corcoran (EWA) and R.T. Fitch, who are all fellow horse advocates.  I am especially excited to meet R.T. Fitch (author) because he has helped me so much and I really want to meet him and thank him personally for helping me and posting my blog on his blog.  I think it's cool R.T. is going to be there too, especially since a lot of the people who are standing up for the horses are women.  It will be great to meet another man who is really trying to stop this evil and is also standing up for what he thinks is right.  And thank you to Congressman Moran, another man never willing to back down from the fight.

When I am in Washington DC, I have an appointment with Congressman Guinta.  Congressman Guinta will also be taking me on the House Floor during a vote so I can see how it all works.  That is going to be REALLY cool!  There are a few other people who have asked to meet with me, so we are trying to schedule that now.  I will let you know when I do.

Mark Ericson from WOKQ (in NH) is going to be broadcasting from a sister station and asked to interview me.  Unfortunately, we will have already left DC when he can meet, so we will be talking when I get back from my trip.  I will also be talking with Jean Proulx on WSCA (in NH) on her "PAWsitive Thoughts" show in April.  I will try to get recordings of both to post for you.

I feel really good that I have all my homework done so I can go on my trip and not be stressed out by it.  I even completed the work my teacher sent home that I will be missing, so I am all set.  Now, I can concentrate on my speech and practice it before we go.  I wonder if people would want to hear my speech on the plane... it would be great practice.  Maybe I can present it to the Captain.  I think I'll ask when I get on the plane  :-)

I will try to write from Washington DC, but it may have to wait until I get back because I will be so busy.

Thanks again for all your help and support!!  Love never fails and I will never give up on the horses!!


Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Neville - Best Horse of the Year

This is a great story about how a horse that was going to slaughter that is now the best horse of the year!  Imagine what the horse world would have missed out on if Neville had been slaughtered!  ~Declan

Horse once destined for slaughter becomes USEF horse of the year

By Elizabeth Batt
Jan 16, 2012 in sports

Cincinnati - It reads like the trailer for a new movie. Failed racehorse Neville Bardos, an Australian thoroughbred who was written off as a disaster and sent to the slaughterhouse, just became the USEF Horse of the Year.
This story is certainly no movie, but it could be. Neville Bardos, a 13-year-old, 16.1 hh chestnut gelding, is the epitome of equine perseverance. Several equines in history have overcome terrible odds, but this eventing gelding has faced more than his fair share. Having escaped death twice, the thoroughbred's grit was finally rewarded on Jan. 13, when he was named the United States Equestrian Federation’s (USEF) horse of the year for 2011.
Born in 1999, Neville was foaled at one of Australia's most prestigious racehorse stud facilities, Woodlands in NSW, but he "wasn’t much chop on the race track," says Boyd Martin, who paid just $850 for the thoroughbred to save the failed horse from an appointment at the slaughter house.
Redirecting the gelding's discipline towards eventing, Neville's start on the event circuit back in 2002, was not an auspicious one. He dumped his rider – Silva Martin, at the second fence and it took 15 minutes to catch him so that he could finish the course. But in 2006, the gelding began to come into his own when he won the Coffs Harbour CIC**, and the Melbourne CCI** in Australia.
One year on, Neville was imported to the United States where in 2008, he placed 9th at Rolex Kentucky CCI****, and was shortlisted for the 2008 Bejing Olympics. In 2010, the Australian gelding improved on his previous Rolex competition, jumping five spots to 4th at the Rolex CCI****. An impressive feat for a horse once destined for death for having no jump.
But Neville's biggest test came in May 2011 when he was one of 11 horses housed in Martin's stable when fire broke out. Six horses perished in the fire and Neville was severely burned. Having been trapped in the burning barn for 45 minutes, the gelding was left with horrific injuries to his lungs and throat from smoke inhalation. When Martin led Neville out of the barn, the horse was gurgling and had burns across his body.
Neville's outlook for survival did not appear good, chances of him pulling through were marginal and his eventing career was deemed over.
The gelding was sent to Fair Hill Equine Therapy Center, where under the care of veterinarian Dr. Kevin Keane he underwent a series of Hyperbaric Chamber therapies. That he survived the damaging fire was as miraculous as Neville's will to live; on June 07, the horse was released from the facility with the expectation that he would be retired. But the Aussie thoroughbred had other ideas.
Three months after his brush with death, in Sep. 2011, Neville Bardos was competing again but not as one might think, at lower-level competitions. The gelding traveled with Martin to England and tackled one of the world's most prestigious and difficult eventing competitions – the tough CCI4* Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials.
The grueling competition which attracts an elite international conglomerate of riders competing on one incredibly athletic horse, takes place over three days and across three disciplines – dressage, cross-country and show jumping. The total score from all three days, when combined, determine the winner.
The Burghley Horse Trials near Stamford, Lincolnshire, are classed by the International Federation for Equestrian Sports (FEI) as one of the six leading three-day events in the world. Neville Bardos would be going up against greats, William Fox-Pitt and Parklane Hawk, Mary King and Kings Temptress and Zara Phillips (daughter of Captain Mark Phillips and Princess Anne) on High Kingdom.
Neville, ridden by the man who led him to safety – Boyd Martin, "rocketed around the cross-country course clean and fast and finished seventh," overall reported USEF. The gelding indeed placed behind Fox-Pitt and King, but finished three places ahead of Zara Phillips.
So what's next for the miracle horse?
Neville, who is owned by 10 members of a syndicate bearing his name, looks set to be on the US eventing team for the London 2012 Olympic Games. Boyd Martin is now eyeing his first Olympic appearance after becoming the top finishing American at the world championships.
Boyd & describe the chestnut gelding with the big white blaze as "an enthusiastic character that is full of life [...and is...] named after a fast talking, hot headed, stand over gangster that lives in Melbourne." They added that Neville is also "a top class cribber," a negative vice in which horses gulp in air while biting off pieces of fence or other solid material when they gulp. Cribbing is addictive and is believed to be similar to obsessive-compulsive disorder in humans.
Well, no horse is perfect, but allowances are more than likely to be made for Neville's vices, considering all he's achieved. Jointly crowned with Sjoerd, a Friesian whose year on the National circuit was one of insurmountable success, it is the first time ever, USEF has crowned two horses with its highest honor; "one from an International Discipline and one from a National Discipline," USEF said.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Front Page of the Portsmouth Herald

Here's the article, written by Joey Cresta of the Portsmouth Herald, about my event.  I am so happy he was able to come and see all the kids writing letters!  His articles help get the word out about what is happening to our horses and raises awareness in our state.  Thank you Joey for continuing to follow what I have been working on!  ~Declan

Boy to lobby against horse slaughter in D.C.

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Declan Gregg, 9, of Greenland, gets a kiss from his grandmother, Dennie Forte, right, of Rye, as horse protection activist, author and illustrator Denise Brown, middle, helps 8-year-old Claudia Reuss of Hampton write a letter to President Barack Obama asking him to protect horses from being slaughtered for meat, during a campaign event Sunday at the N.H. Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals in Stratham.Cheryl Senter photo
STRATHAM — Children and adults visited the N.H. Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals on Sunday to voice their support for a Greenland boy who will soon be visiting Capitol Hill to tell lawmakers to end inhumane treatment of horses.
The SPCA on Portsmouth Avenue hosted a letter-writing party to help 9-year-old Declan Gregg of Greenland obtain pleas opposing horse slaughter to bring to Congress later this month. Gregg said his goal was to collect 115 letters before leaving for Washington, D.C., on March 26, and he has already surpassed that number.

Help Declan's Cause

Letter-writing campaign:
Send letters opposing horse slaughter to P.O. Box 614, Greenland, NH 03840.
On Sunday, he said he was pleased to see many boys and girls join him in speaking up against horse slaughter, which he learned about from his mother, Stacie Gregg, when she was researching the issue.
"They think (horses are) special. They really like them and they don't want them to be killed," Declan Gregg said.
Advocates for humane treatment of horses say that many horses each year are bought at auction or otherwise obtained and shipped off to Canada and Mexico to be slaughtered. Their meat is sold to consumers in countries including Japan and France.
Eleven-year-old Emily Lavoie of Eliot, Maine, was one girl who attended the letter-writing party Sunday. "They're just really beautiful," she said of horses, adding she wrote a letter in the hope of being able to save the animals.
Her grandmother, Eleanor Pearsall, also attended the event and gave Gregg a picture of her horse. "I think it's a wonderful thing that you're doing," she told him.
Stacie Gregg said the response to her son's efforts continues to amaze her. She said his blog,, has now been visited by people in more than 50 countries.
She said the most common responses thank Declan or laud his bravery.
When he travels to Washington, he will meet with Congressman Frank Guinta, R-N.H., who will take him to the House floor to see a vote of Congress, Stacie Gregg said. She and her son will then spend the next two days lobbying.
Scott Gregg, Declan's father, said his son's interest in humane treatment of animals has been a "display of passion and compassion." He said he is proud of his son, who is "very interested in making a difference."
Paula Parisi, N.H. SPCA's manager of humane education programs, said she has seen many compassionate children over the years, but none have gone as far as Declan to protect animals. She nominated him for a 2012 Kohl's Cares award — the department store's program honors children who have done great acts of community service.
"He can make a huge difference for horses, and he's reached so many people," she said.
Portsmouth resident Denise Brown attended the event to sell copies of her book, "Wind, Wild Horse Rescue," a story about the rescue of a wild horse. She donated a portion of the proceeds to the SPCA.
"(Declan is) incredible," Brown said. "The future of wild horses is in the children's hands today."


My Children 4 Horses Letter Writing Party at the NHSPCA was great!  I got 82 more letters from kids and am now way over my goal of 115 letters and even have close to 200 letters!  It was really fun for me to host the party and write letters and draw pictures with the kids who came. 

I was interviewed by Joey Cresta from the Portsmouth Herald again and Patrick Archambault from the Foster's Daily Democrat interviewed me too.  There were also a few photographers there taking pictures of me and the kids writing their letters.  Lots of kids were there of all ages, which was exciting for me because even older kids came to the event.  I thought my party was great!  I had a great time!  Thank you so much to all the people who helped me put the event together and who came to help meA BIG thank you to everyone who came to write letters to let our government know that horse slaughter is WRONG!!
You can still send me your letters, but I have to get them by the 24th so I can get them all organized before I leave for Washington DC.  I got a bunch more letters in the mail today including two packages with several letters in them, one from Illinois and one from California!  Send your letters to me at:

Declan Gregg
C/O Children 4 Horses
PO Box 614
Greenland, NH 03840

I want to thank everyone that has helped and supported me, especially my parents.  I can't wait to go to Washington D.C. in just under a week!  I am SUPER excited for my trip!  ~Declan

Saturday, March 17, 2012

My Nomination for an Award

I am happy to let you know that I have been nominated by the Manager of Humane Education at the NHSPCA, for the Kohl's Care Scholarship award. Each year, Kohl's recognizes and rewards young volunteers (6-18) across the country for their amazing contributions to their communities.  

I feel very honored to have been nominated for the award and thank Mrs. Parisi VERY much!  I found out that in her almost 12 years of working at the NHSPCA, I am only the third child she has ever nominated and that makes me feel like what I am doing really matters to people.

I really hope I get the award!  The work I have done for the Horse Slaughter Prevention Act has been a really great and fun experience.  I hope horse slaughter stops forever!

I cannot wait until the Press Conference in Washington DC, where I will be speaking to let our legislators know how I feel about horse slaughter and why I am working so hard to make it stop and be banned for good.

Here is a picture I made called "The Battle for the Horses!"  All the destroyed things belong to the people who want to slaughter horses.  ~Declan

Stop Horse Slaughter!!!!!

I was thinking about what I was going to say to Congress at school yesterday and came up with this so far:

Hi my name is Declan I am 9 years old this is what I think about horse slaughter and why it should stop forever.

How would you like to have your eyes cut out on the truck and get trampled on and then be whipped and beaten into a slaughter house and be slipping in your own blood then be stabbed in the back multiple times like in Mexico or shot in the head with a captive bolt and usually they miss and would you like to be strung up by your legs and have your neck slit and bleed to death how would you feel?!!

That is what is happening to our horses. If you wouldn't like that how do you think the horses feel?  Horses are not treated fairly, what did the ever do to you to be killed this way?  When I see pictures and videos of this inhumane way to kill horses I look at their eyes and see the most hurt and scared eyes that I have ever seen!  How would you like to be treated so unfairly?  Our horses should be treated fairly and with respect!

Horses have helped us build our economy and this is how we thank them?  How would you want to be treated after you did so many things to help others?  Kindly - that is how our horses should be treated!

How would you like to live in a town with a horse slaughterhouse and have no clean water just blood and insides from horses in your water system?  How would you like to worry about being hit on the road by a person driving one of the trucks that is sending horses to slaughter because they drive so badly!  

I hope you stop this unnecessary evil.  Please support and co-sponsor H.B. 2966 and ask your fellow Congressmen to do the same!

Thank you for listening,

Extreme Makeover - Mustang Style

Here is an amazing story about two brothers and how they train wild mustangs so people want to adopt them and give them good homes.  I like this story because I know there are people helping to stop horse slaughter, but we still need more help so it is banned for good.
Go Jauregui Brothers!!!!!!!!!


Jauregui brothers work to tame wild mustangs

Group needs homes for gentled horses

5:59 AM, Mar. 10, 2012  |  
Jesus “Chewy” Jauregui performs a rope trick while standing on the back of Denali, a wild Mustang that he has been training since Jan. 27. Pamela Parks/For the Door County Advocate
Jesus “Chewy” Jauregui performs a rope trick while standing on the back of Denali, a wild Mustang that he has been training since Jan. 27. Pamela Parks/For the Door County Advocate
For more information on the Extreme Mustang Makeover project adopting a mustang, or the natural horsemanship skills of Chewy Jeuregui, contact him at his "Hands Horsemanship" ranch at (920) 493-1127 or chewyj75@yahoo .com. More information about the Mustang Heritage Foundation, visit www.mustangheritage
Jesus "Chewy" Jauregui rides around his arena with Denali, deftly maneuvering around obstacles, and up onto a small wooden bridge. It's hard to imagine that this calm and skillful horse was a wild mustang untouched by any human's hand just a few short weeks ago. It is even more spectacular to watch Chewy slowly twirl a lasso and throw it around a nearby cone — all the while standing atop his saddle on the back of Denali, who patiently waits for him to finish.
Denali was given to Chewy to train by the Mustang Heritage Foundation (MHF). He has less than three months to work with the horse but his progress already can be seen.
With just a look and a tilt of his head or turn of his body, Chewy communicates with Denali, who seems to understand just what she needs to do — come closer, follow, back up. Quiet, natural horsemanship skills is what Chewy teaches — both to horses and to humans. His success is built upon trust — between horse and rider — and skill.
"The No. 1 important thing is to tame the horse, to gain the horse's trust," Chewy said. "We don't want to see the horse be afraid or intimidated. We want a nice and calm horse."
Chewy and his brother, Teo, began training two mustangs on Jan. 27 on Chewy's ranch in Baileys Harbor. Denali is Chewy's seventh mustang and Golden Girl is Teo's first. The mustangs were removed from protected lands in Nevada by the Bureau of Land Management(BLM), There are nearly 30,000 wild horses in 10 western states and the BLM works to relocate or find good homes for the horses to keep their population in check.
In the Extreme Mustang Makeover program, horse trainers have less than 100 days — in Chewy and Teo's case about 85 days — to take wild horses and train them to compete in a serious horse show. Chewy and Teo will compete at the Midwest Horse Show on April 21-22 in Madison. Top finalists compete for cash prizes, but that is not the main motivation for the Jaureguis.
"We train the mustangs for so many reasons but No. 1 is so that the horses can find a good home," Chewy said. "We are working with the horses, challenging the horses, so we can let people see what a mustang can do and so they can be adopted."

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Ways You Can Help End Horse Slaughter

Whether you are a child or an adult, there are ways that you can help end horse slaughter and even right from your computer!

If you are a child, WRITE ME YOUR LETTERS about what horses mean to you, why you like them, why you think horses are special and how you want them treated humanely.  I leave for Washington DC SOON and I would really like to take your letters and drawings with me to show our Congress and Senate that AMERICA'S KIDS CARE about what happens to our horses!  Send your letters to me at:
Declan Gregg C/O Children 4 Horses
PO Box 614
Greenland, NH 03840

I have a meeting with Congressman Frank Guinta (R-NH) on Monday, March 26th when I will talk to him about why I think horse slaughter should be banned for ever and then he will be taking me on the House Floor during a vote to see how it all works.  On Tuesday, March 27th, I will be attending a press conference, sponsored by Congressman Jim Moran of Virginia, with organizers from the Equine Welfare Alliance (EWA) as well as other supporters, and then heading to the offices of the Congressmen and Senators to give them your letters!!  Congressman Guinta's office has also arranged for a Capitol tour for me after we deliver the letters.

Kids - you can also help by asking the adults you live with and know to contact their legislators and ask them to support/co-sponsor the American Horse Slaughter Prevention Act S.1176/H.R.2966.  I have been getting letters from adults as well as kids, who want to see horse slaughter end for good.


Adults, please contact your legislators and let them know that you want to have horse slaughter banned for good and that you don't want to see our horses shipped across borders to slaughter either!
Here is a link to a website that has a full list of our US Congressmen and how to contact them:

And here's a link for a full list of the US Senators and how to contact them:

If you aren't really sure why to say, the HSUS (Humane Society of the United States) has made it really easy for you!!  Use this link and sign a letter that they will send right out to your legislators for you!

Or you can go to this link from the ASPCA (American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) if you would like and they will do the same thing!

I know my work is making a difference everyday and that makes me VERY happy!  Every time someone reads my blog or visits Children 4 Horses on Facebook, I know that they care and want to see America's horses treated humanely!

To support Declan and help him with his travel expenses for Washington DC, and his letter writing supplies, please consider buying a Children 4 Horses t-shirt or bracelet - or both!  ~Declan

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

No Such Thing as an Unwanted Horse

There is no such thing as an unwanted horse.Even if the current owner does not have a use for their horse, someone else like me would REALLY WANT THEM!!!!!!!!!!  The unwanted horse is a myth!!

Here's a news story about horses in Ione, California, who were headed to the slaughterhouse and were rescued and are now being adopted and going to loving homes.  This story is proof that there is no such thing as an unwanted horse!!

I couldn't post the video without it starting to play as soon as you open my blog, so here's the link so you can see the full story on News10 - it's worth watching!!  ~Declan

Horses rescued from slaughter find loving home in Ione

8:49 PM, Mar 12, 2012   |   4  comments

IONE, CA - At least two horses that were likely headed to the slaughterhouse were among five delivered by an Oroville horse rescue organization to a family in Ione.
Earlenne Friend saw the News10 report last month on a group of horses, including 24 foals, that were rescued from a livestock auction by the Horse Plus Humane Society.
Tawnee Preisner of Horse Plus said the sale price indicated the horses were probably being sold for human consumption.
Friend adopted a foal and a pony that Preisner said were likely headed for slaughter, along with three other horses taken from owners who could no longer care for them.
Preisner said all but 6 of the foals featured in the Feb. 21 report had found homes as of Monday.
Friend adopted a palomino yearling named Lucky Pal late last year after an earlier News10 report on an accident that left the young horse near death by the side of a road in Wilton.
The Friend family spent thousands of dollars for two complicated surgeries, but Lucky Pal died of complications following the second operation.
Earlenne Friend said adopting the five horses from Oroville helped fill the void left by Lucky Pal's death.
"It's good to help these babies," she said.  "We wanted to do something good."
By George Warren,